Blogging from the Beacon.

For the Week of October 20 – October 24.

Last week, the kidnapping story continued to unfold. It will reach its conclusion this week, although the repercussions should be felt for awhile. I have to admit that I feel slightly confused about what they’re trying to do with this plot. First, it’s supposed to show that Bill really cares about Lizzie. As the cliche goes, you don’t know what you want until it’s gone. Someone stole Lizzie, so he wants her back. I’m not convinced this means he loves her. His emotional state seems to be more of a reawakening of what he experienced when Max died. I know emotions are never exactly pure, but Bill’s are more than tainted. More disturbing is what seems to be Bill’s encroaching alcoholism, which is somewhere I hope they don’t go. There have been enough addiction plots on this series in the past few years.

The other point of the kidnapping plot was to show that Dinah is really desperate, which it did show. It also showed that even if she could rip off Alan and steal Spaulding all alone, when she works with anyone, whether it’s her brother or Grady, everything goes wrong. I don’t think that was intentional, but isn’t that always what happens to Dinah? Isn’t any kind of relationship a mistake when it comes to her?

The other thing that this plot is supposed to demonstrate is that Grady is out of his depths, that he is naive, clumsy and not so much evil, but incompetent and dumb. That’s the way he comes off anyway and I assume it’s intentional. Even if they’ve cast him in the guise of the darkly romantic love thug which the writers seem so fond of, they seem to play much of his actions for comedy rather than drama. Whether it’s his ransom note, which everyone made fun of because it was hokey; the bizarre phony American accent he uses when talking to Lizzie, which sounds like it was ripped from a bad horror movie; or the way that he and Dinah stumble around like Springfield’s answer to Abbott and Costello, all things point to not taking this story terribly seriously. The real kicker, of course, was the hole episode. Lizzie fell down a hole. He could have run but went down to help her and got stuck. Cyrus had to come to his rescue, re-capturing Lizzie and helping his brother out. Grady and Cyrus have developed believable chemistry, at least as much as you can have when you’re playing alienated siblings and their exchanges are increasingly interesting. Not for what they say, which is never much, but for the strangled body language they use. However, the ‘stuck in a hole’ episode made me think back to all of those ‘child stuck in a well’ stories that were common about a decade ago. This seems to be a deliberate reference to those, if not a throwback. It moved on a great deal faster than such stories ever did. Mostly though, throughout this ordeal, I kept thinking about that episode of “The Simpsons” when Bart pretended to be stuck down a well.

Two possible romances also got some air this past week. Remy met Christina, a character who has essentially been invented as his romantic point of interest. They had one scene. It was flirty and amusing but it will take a while for this to develop much more. Meanwhile, the slightly more established pairing of Cyrus and Cassie were sweet, in their own slightly twisted way. This is the best pairing I’ve seen for either of them, which is what makes it so sad since we all know it’s doomed to go nowhere when Cassie leaves. Finally, Cyrus is getting back more of the persona he lost when he was sucked into the Cooper family orbit.

Most of the week’s romantic action, however, was split between two couples. Marina and Mallet are getting used to living together. They bickered and she kept him at arm’s length until she discovered, thanks to Cassie, that Cyrus had cheated on Harley with her. That seemed to brighten things up for her. She then flashed Mallet a lot of cleavage and they broke Daisy’s house rules and got it on in the house. The other couple to get most of the attention was Jeffrey and Reva, especially since Josh returned. He’s given up on the ministry and now seems interested in concentrating on work. He and Jeffrey had some interesting scenes together and should develop and enjoyable rivalry. Good rivals are as hard to come by as good lovers. One of the reasons that Josh and Billy work so well together is that they are often rivals as much as brothers. Personally, I could care less who Reva ends up with, it’s the rivalry I enjoy.

Anyway, those were my thoughts about last week. Please feel free to leave your thoughts and opinions in the comments section below and remember that this is all in fun.

Matt Purvis